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NOTE: resources listed here are done so as a service to the public and are not an endorsement of, nor solicitation on behalf of these organizations or businesses. San Diego Roots is not paid for these listings nor can listings here be bought. They are listed solely to help folks looking for resources find them.

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Sustainable San Diego

Sustainable California
Sites for Sustainable Living
Land Trusts
Beginning Farmer Resource Links


Sustainable San Diego

Sky Mountain Institute Sky Mountain's EcoEducation workshops are located in beautiful Harmony Grove Valley outside of Escondido. Sky Mountain's seven-acre demonstration permaculture garden is used as a teaching centre. The EcoEducation workshops feature hands-on training in all aspects of sustainability including permaculture, organic gardening, rainwater and grey water harvesting.

Revolution Landscape works with clients to create a detailed design of a tasteful, productive, and practical landscape utilizing the site's natural topography to minimize water runoff and consider each area's exposure to sunlight to determine where vegetation will thrive. They offer over 30 varieties of native species and an array of fruit trees, vegetables, and herbs many of which are heirloom varieties. Designs can be as simple as a 10×4 ft. raised bed to grow vegetables or can encompass the entire property.

Eden on Earth Ecological Landscaping offers a unique and sustainable approach to designing outdoor living spaces based on the ecological principles of permaculture. They specialize in ecological land use management and design for residential, commercial, and agricultural applications. With members located in San Diego and Northern Arizona Eden on Earth works throughout the Southwestern United States and is available for permaculture design and ecological based educational workshops throughout the southwest as well as design and consultations in related fields.

Olivewood Gardens Located in National City, the Mission of Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center is to connect and motivate students and families from diverse backgrounds through organic gardening, environmental stewardship, and nutrition education, empowering them to be healthy and active citizens. Their Vision is to reconnect students and families to the natural environment through food, education and community engagement.

How Can I Help? This new environmentally themed TV show showcases San Diego businesses, industries, farms, and non-profit organizations working to make a difference through green and sustainable practices. Click the link to get more information, and be sure to check out the trailer with Misha from Wild Willow Farm and Educational Center.

San Diego Food Not Lawns promotes communty gardens, school gardens, and using our abundant sunshine and long growing season to grow delicious, nutritious and fresh food year round. Their motto is, "cultivating an edible future."

Slow Food Urban San Diego "Slow food" is an idea, a way of living and a way of eating. It is a global, grassroots movement with thousands of members around the world that links the pleasure of food with a commitment to community and the environment. Slow Food Urban San Diego is a local chapter, or convivium, of the national organization Slow Food USA, and its parent organization Slow Food International.

Spirit Graphics and Printing is a family-owned print shop based in Chula Vista. Owner Thomas Ackerman has taken considerable strides to make his business as sustainable as possible, and recently won a Small Business of the Year Award from the California Air Resources Board for his efforts. Spirit's sustainable practices include using paper from sustainably harvested forests, voluntarily purchasing clean wind energy, recycling aluminum press plates and paper trimmings, and providing chlorine-free paper stocks. In addition, they relocated their facility to a location that is closer to where employees live.

edible SAN DIEGO is a community-based quarterly publication that promotes the abundance of local foods, season by season. Their mission is to transform the way our community shops for, cooks, eats and relates to food one decision at a time, and to celebrate local, sustainable, seasonal, authentic foods and culinary traditions. To view the latest issue online, click here.

H2OME is San Diego's first rainwater harvesting and greywater recycling installation business. Offering consultations on water reuse and storage opportunities, H2OME provides a complete solution from planning to installation, including passive and active rainwater harvesting and gray water use in conjunction with appropriate plantings and landscaping.

Camp Stevens Retreat Center In its beautiful, unspoiled setting near Julian, Camp Stevens serves as a point of contact between human beings and the natural world. Through its program's for youths and adults, organic gardens, native landscaping, composting operations, solar energy, and commitment to serving local/organic food in its kitchen, Camp Stevens seeks to serve as a model of ecological responsibility and to help individuals and groups reclaim an active stewardship of all that sustains us.

Camp Stevens' mission is to help individuals of all ages deepen their sense of appreciation and understanding of themselves, their fellow human beings, and our environment. It also seeks to be a peaceful 'place apart' for nurturing, planning, reflection, tolerance, exchange of ideas, and sharing in a caring community.

Julian Co-op The Julian co-op's goals are to promote regionally grown, seasonal local food; promote sustainable ecosystems; honest labeling that is traceable back to the source; education; and supporting local economies through the bartering of local goods, services and skills.

Backyard Organics specializes in designing and maintaining handcrafted organic vegetable and herb gardens to custom-fit your family’s needs and desires. They plan your garden using a proactive and preventative approach to best produce your choice of season vegetables and herbs.

Urban Plantations was created to help people blend urban farming practices with contemporary neighborhood landscape themes. By incorporating fruits and vegetables in your front or back yards, or even on a balcony or window box, they provide you with a source of inexpensive, healthy food.

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Sustainable California

Raising Organic Family Farms Scholarship Program San Diego Roots is proud to support Raising Organic Family Farms, a new initiative from Lundberg Family Farms to help nurture, grow and redefine a new generation of organic family farmers. Raising Organic Family Farms is providing up to $50,000 in grants and scholarships in 2011 for beginning or transitioning organic farmers – from college students

California FarmLink Their mission is to build family farming and conserve farmland in California by linking aspiring and retiring farmers; and promoting techniques and disseminating information that facilitate intergenerational farm transitions.

Occidental Arts & Ecology OAEC is a nonprofit organizing and education center and organic farm in Northern California’s Sonoma County. OAEC was founded in 1994 by a group of biologists, horticulturists, educators, activists, and artists seeking innovative and practical approaches to the pressing environmental and economic crises of our day. Much of the Center’s work addresses the challenges of creating democratic communities that are ecologically, economically and culturally sustainable in an increasingly privatized and corporatized economy and culture. OAEC's programs combine research, demonstration, education, and organizing to develop collaborative, community-based strategies for positive social change and effective environmental stewardship.

The Center for Urban Agriculture at Fairview Gardens Based on one of the oldest organic farms in California, the Center for Urban Agriculture at Fairview Gardens is an internationally respected model for small-scale urban food production, agricultural preservation, and farm-based education.

The Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems is a research, education, and public service program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, dedicated to increasing ecological sustainability and social justice in the food and agriculture system. On the UCSC campus, the Center operates the 2-acre Alan Chadwick Garden and the 25-acre Farm. Both sites are managed using organic production methods and serve as research, teaching, and training facilities for students, staff, and faculty.

The Ecological Farming Association is a non-profit educational organization founded in 1981. Through EFA’s consistent quality of programs, they have developed a far-reaching network of people, NGOs, and businesses committed to sustainable agriculture. EFA programs bring together a diversity of stakeholders in California food production to promote grassroots leadership and regional solutions to decrease the negative impacts of industrial agriculture on environmental and community health.

EFA brings people together to provide education, alliance building and advocacy
The Ecological Farming Association nurtures healthy and just farms, food systems, communities and environment by bringing people together for education, alliance building and advocacy. Through educational conferences, training programs, on-farm events and communications initiatives, we pursue a safe and healthful food system that strengthens soils, protects air and water, encourages diverse ecosystems and economies, and honors rural life

Society for Agriculture and Food Ecology (SAFE) is a group of UCBerkeley students who catalyze honest discussion of a truly sustainable food system, bringing this discussion onto their campus and into their community via panels, speakers, events and workshops. Their intention is to be inclusive, productive and impassioned on behalf of our common goals of agricultural sustainability, ecological integrity, healthful human nutrition and vibrant rural economies. They feel strongly that this discourse is a critical element in the formation of policy goals, urban consumer literacy, and the shaping of food science, and hope to embolden those interested in food/farming to make a career in these fertile fields.

Beginning Farmers is a group working to develop a comprehensive and up to date compilation of information resources for new, experienced, and potential farmers, as well as educators, activists, and policy makers interested in the development of new farm enterprises. Through their core resource pages and frequent blog postings, they endeavor to provide a robust and constantly growing forum for sharing information and ideas about starting new farms, as well as other content related to sustainable agriculture and food systems.

Beginning Farmers seeks to offer content useful to those interested in a broad range of agricultural practices, but places special emphasis on resources for small farms, organic farming, direct marketing, and building local food systems.

Victory Grower is a handy site sponsored by the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources project. Victory Grower supports the notion that gardening is an excellent way to increase food security (the amount and quality of food) in America. Gardening enables youth, families and entire communities to improve their access to good food.

The Edible Schoolyard Berkeley California's model for integrating learning with growing food, and the inspiration for the Terra Nova garden project.

The California School Garden Network is a collaborative effort of a number of educational institutions and corporate partners committed to enhancing learning through the use of teaching gardens in schools and other community settings.

Common Ground Garden Supply a not-for-profit garden supply and education center, located in Palo Alto on the San Francisco peninsula.

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Sites for Sustainable Living

Go Green at Home By following some easy tips, any family can take part in the green revolution and do its part for the greater good. Not only that, but you can also have more money to put aside for fun things like family vacations and remodeling projects that can add value to your home. On this site there are tips for recycling, composting, water and energy conservation and more.

Certified Naturally Grown a non-profit alternative eco-labelling program for small farms that grow using USDA Organic methods but are NOT a part of the USDA Certified Organic program. The Certified Naturally Grown™ label is available to farms primarily distributing Locally and Directly, through Farmer's Markets, Farm Stands, Community Supported Agriculture projects, local restaurants, coops, small grocery stores or through other direct sales channels such as the internet.

Sustainable Table Information about all things sustainable; producers of "The Meatrix" animated short films.

Kitchen Gardeners International promotes "the localist food of all, globally.

Organic Consumers Association Campaining for health, justice and sustainability. They produce a chart showing the corporate ownership of organic products on the market.

Greenfield Paper Company source for tree-free paper and paper products.

The Beyond Organic Radio Show is an unique environmental radio and multimedia program, addressing issues of organic food and farming, social and environmental sustainability.

Chef's Collaborative is a national network of more than 1,000 members of the food community who promote sustainable cuisine by celebrating the joys of local, seasonal, and artisanal cooking.

The New Farm Farmer-to-farmer knowhow from the Rodale Institute. Lots of information about organic and sustainable farming. Be sure to view their chart on the Corporate Structure of the Organic Food Industry.

Local Harvest An excellent site for finding local organic food producers in your area. Also includes organic food producers from all over the nation for those products you can't find at home.

Food & Water Watch challenges the corporate control and abuse of our food and water resources by empowering people to take action and by transforming the public consciousness about what we eat and drink.

Sustain 360 has topics such as organic household, lifestyle, environment, political activism, etc. Our favorite is The Heart of Farming, which has beautiful photos and spoken interviews with small family farmers. Sustain 360 is sponsored by Slow Food, The Organic Center and Organic Valley farm cooperative.

The Cornucopia Institute is dedicated to the fight for economic justice for the family-scale farming community. Through research, advocacy, and economic development their goal is to empower farmers both politically and through marketplace initiatives. The Organic Integrity Project acts as a corporate watchdog assuring that no compromises to the credibility of organic farming methods and the food it produces are made in the pursuit of profit, actively resisting regulatory rollbacks and the weakening of organic standards to protect and maintain consumer confidence in the organic food label. Click here to see their rankings on organic milk.

World Hunger Year is a leading advocate for innovative, community-based solutions to hunger and poverty. WHY challenges society to confront these problems by advancing models that create self-reliance, economic justice, and equal access to nutritious and affordable food. Check out their pages on Food Security and Food Policy Councils.

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Land Trusts

San Diego Area Land Trusts:

Back Country Land Trust Preserving habitat and open space in San Diego County.

Tierra Miguel Foundation An anthroposophical endeavor for the renewal of the earth and humanity through agriculture, education, and the healing arts.

Fallbrook Land Conservancy Enhancing the rural lifestyle and natural beauty of Fallbrook.

Jamul Trails Council Providing education about riding, mountain biking and equestrian trials, preserving existing trails and establishing new trails on public land.

Volcan Mountain Foundation Maintenance and enhancement of natural habitat, protection of native plant and animal species, and preservation of archaeological sites on Volcan Mountain.

Northern California Agricultural Land Trusts:

Marin Agricultural Land Trust MALT acquires agricultural conservation easements on farmland in voluntary transactions with landowners, and encourages public policies that support and enhance agriculture.

Solano County Farmlands Foundation Preserving Farmlands and Open Spaces Throughout Solano County.

National Land Trusts:

The Land Trust Alliance LTA promotes voluntary land conservation across the country, provides resources, leadership, and training to the nation's 1,200-plus nonprofit, grassroots land trusts and help TPL helps conserve land for recreation and spiri ourishment and to improve the health and quality of life of American communities.

The Trust for Public Land TPL helps conserve land for recreation and spiritual nourishment and to improve the health and quality of life of American communities.

American Farmland Trust AFT works to stop the loss of productive farmlands and to promote farming practices that lead to a healthy environment.

Equity Trust The mission of Equity Trust is to promote equity in the world by changing the way people think about and hold property.

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